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To ask for your advice on giving my family a better future?

(18 Posts)
MyFutureSelf Thu 14-May-20 10:21:31

Backstory is, I had an abusive childhood and as a result, I ended up struggling with my mental health and massively under achieved at school as a result. Saying that, I do have a few decent A-Levels, but I was nowhere near the grades etc predicted for me. I ended up not going to university which is a bit of a regret of mine.

Fast forward 6 years and I started an OU degree in business studies. I then married my now DH and moved overseas. I was no longer entitled to any funding/bursary so I couldn’t afford to continue my studies.

Since then, I have had children and now live back in the UK. I have had a substantial career break whilst having young children and last year I decided to study AAT Foundation Certificate in Accounting which I passed with distinction last month.

Before all this coronavirus stuff started, I had begun looking for a job. One of my DC is high risk so my job search is now on hold. I don’t want to sit around doing nothing so I’m planning to continue my studies. I had firstly considered studying the next AAT level but it comes at a cost and we are trying to be as sensible with money as we can be just now.

Another option I have is to continue my degree through the OU. If I study full time, I can have a degree in 2.5 years. I would be eligible for a student loan so I wouldn’t repay anything until I earn a certain amount. Also, I can slightly change the degree I’m studying to BA (hons) Business Management (Accounting). That way, the knowledge I have gained from my AAT qual will be helpful with some of the modules.

Does this sound like a good plan? I know people say degrees don’t count for so much these days but i know they do open doors into certain fields and I do want to give myself as many options as I can for when the job market begins to recover.

I don’t really have many people IRL who can advise me with this sort of thing so I’m hoping some of you might be able to help smile Thanks.

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MyFutureSelf Thu 14-May-20 10:23:47

I should probably mention, I’m 31 now.

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june2007 Thu 14-May-20 10:31:58

My oh went back to uni, but then didn,t end up using his degree in his last job, but was happy with a stable job. Which would be more beneficial doing your bA or oing next level of our accoutancy? I think you need to look at what you want to do work wise and what are the requirements to get there.

suziedoozy Thu 14-May-20 11:10:55

I would start off by trying to find job adverts and descriptions for the types of job you would like to have. Then you will see what qualifications are on the required and desirable lists then decide which qualification you want to do.

Some jobs required the degree level qualification to even get through the door to the interview whilst others don’t.

As a full time student in my 40s I support further qualifications if they are going to be of benefit.

MyFutureSelf Thu 14-May-20 11:53:43

Accountancy is definitely a route I’m interested in. Teaching is also something I’ve thought about (Primary). My thinking was that the degree would be helpful for the later and if I ended up going down the accountancy route, could help me secure a training programme when the job market picks up?

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MyFutureSelf Thu 14-May-20 12:28:57


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MyFutureSelf Thu 14-May-20 13:15:59

Final bump.

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Couchpotato3 Thu 14-May-20 13:18:58

I think you've answered your own question, haven't you? Sounds like you want to do the degree, so go for it - you're already part of the way there, and it's something you have wanted for a long time - unfinished business for you. There's nothing to stop you doing another accountancy qualification later if you want to.

zscaler Thu 14-May-20 13:20:52

I also think it’s good advice to work backwards from where you want to end up to see what qualification would be most beneficial.

Some counties will pay for you to do teacher training so it’s worth looking into that if you’re interested in teaching.

Good luck with whatever you decide!

Greymalkin12 Thu 14-May-20 13:32:50

I work in a regional accountancy practice and a lot of the managers have their accounting qualifications (ACCA / ICAEW) without having done a degree. Depends on the culture of the firm really whether a degree makes a difference. The ACCA and ICAEW can both be studied without a degree (there's an AAT-ACA route).

If you are looking into accountancy after a degree it is worth checking if there are any exam exemptions.

A lot of firms will pay for your training for AAT and beyond, and you've made an excellent start with the foundation certificate which shows commitment.

Reginabambina Thu 14-May-20 13:49:43

I think that sounds sensible. You aren’t really going to be able to work until this coronavirus business is sorted by the sounds of it anyway.

Merryoldgoat Thu 14-May-20 13:55:08

If you WANT to do the degree, do. But if you want to go into accountancy is look for a training contract now - plenty of the larger firms do them for school leavers and you’ll get on the job experience.

The issue with accountancy qualifications studied without work experience is they rarely translate into a suitable job quickly.

I will hire an accounts assistant with no quals but experience sooner than one with quals but who had never actually done the job.

Merryoldgoat Thu 14-May-20 13:56:37

Also, check out the 4 main quals and see which suits you best:


MyFutureSelf Thu 14-May-20 17:01:51

Thanks everyone. That gives me some things to think about and decide what my next step is smile

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KingSheathBelle Fri 15-May-20 11:56:43

You're already giving your children a better future by displaying your personal resilience, work ethic, adaptability and sense of adventure by living in different countries and looking out for them and their future. These are invaluable life lessons.

I'm sorry about your past, good luck in building a better future. I think the degree idea sounds great, it does open doors.

MyFutureSelf Fri 15-May-20 21:00:01

@KingSheathBelle thank you so much. You’re message really means a lot ❤️

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RJnomore1 Fri 15-May-20 21:02:40

I think do the degree. It gives you a really broad base to look for work from. The accountancy qualification narrows you down.

My motto is always keep your options open as long as possible.

And go you!

Cocktail4one Fri 15-May-20 21:05:45

I think everything you have said sounds like a great plan good luck with everything

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